LESOTHO Olympian, Mosito Lehata returned to action in style on Tuesday winning two silver medals at the 2020 Pupkewitz Foundation Open Athletics Championship in Namibia.
This was Lehata’s debut appearance at the six-year-old annual event. He came second in the 60-metre race behind Namibia’s national champion Ernst Narib.
Narib clocked 7.2 seconds while Lehata recorded 7.5 seconds.
The duo also locked horns in the 100m race and Narib still came out tops recording 10.82 second while Lehata came second after 11.2 seconds.
This was Narib’s first official race after the long Covid-19 break which started in March 2020.
Lehata was last in action in the Free State Track and Field Championship in February.
Ahead of the championship, Lehata said he was looking forward to using the event to test his readiness for major events next year.
“The main events that I am targeting will be in January and February 2021 but for me to be ready, I must participate in others like the one in Namibia… there is no way I can be ready without running.”
Lehata is currently under the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Scholarship sponsored by the Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC) to assist him prepare for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.
He is however, yet to qualify for the Olympics but says he is confident that he will make the grade for the global showcase. To qualify, he must clock 10.05 in 100 metres. His personal record currently stands at 10.11.
“I am not far from reaching the Olympic qualifying standard but I must still work hard because it is not easy. During the lockdown I have been trying all means to train because I do not want to use Covid-19 as an excuse if I fail to qualify next year,” Lehata added.
One of the organisers of the Namibia even, Hennie Horn said they were forced to restrict the event to only 220 athletes due to Covid-19.
He however, acknowledged its growth over the last six years.
“The event is growing and even with the Covid-19 restrictions, we had 220 athletes, which is a huge success considering we had stars like Lehata…
He further indicated that the battle between Lehata and Narib was a very interesting race to watch and Narib had to work hard to win.
“The race between Lehata and Narib was good competition. Narib worked hard for his win… It was also good for younger athletes who are as young as seven watching the superstars in action,” Horn said.